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via Sol America

Jimmy Carter of Plains, Georgia

Jimmy Carter was way ahead of the rest of America when he put solar panels on the White House. On June 20, 1979, he made a proud proclamation:

In the year 2000 this solar water heater behind me, which is being dedicated today, will still be here supplying cheap, efficient energy…. A generation from now, this solar heater can either be a curiosity, a museum piece, an example of a road not taken or it can be just a small part of one of the greatest and most exciting adventures ever undertaken by the American people.

The 32-panel system was designed to heat water throughout the presidential residence.




"President Carter saw [solar] as a really valid energy resource, and he understood it. I mean, it is a domestic resource and it is huge," Fred Morse, director of Carter's solar energy program, told Scientific American.

"President Carter saw [solar] as a really valid energy resource, and he understood it. I mean, it is a domestic resource and it is huge," Fred Morse, director of Carter's solar energy program, told Scientific American.

"It was the symbolism of the president wanting to bring solar energy immediately into his administration," he continued. Unfortunately, Ronald Reagan, who was no fan of alternative energy took the panels down form the White House when he took office a few years later.

via Popular Science / Twitter

Carter was right about two things he said in that dedication. First, his panels are currently on display at The Smithsonian Institute, the Carter Library, and the Solar Science and Technology Museum in Dezhou, China.

Second, renewable energy has become one of the most important American endeavors of the new millennium.

There's no doubt that President Carter was way ahead of his time.

Carter has always been a man of action, evidenced by his hands-on approach to building homes with Habitat for Humanity. So in 2017, he leased ten acres of land near his home in Plains, Georgia, to be used as a solar farm with 3,852 panels.

The 94-year-old Carter still lives in his hometown of Plains with his wife in a two-bedroom home that's assessed at about $167,000.

Three years after going live, Carter's solar farm now provides 50% of the small town's electricity needs, generating 1.3 MW of power per year. That's the equivalent of burning about 3,600 tons of coal.

via SolAmerica

The system is state-of-the-art with panels that turn towards the sun throughout the day so they generate the maximum amount of power.

"Distributed, clean energy generation is critical to meeting growing energy needs around the world while fighting the effects of climate change," Carter said in a SolAmerica press release. "I am encouraged by the tremendous progress that solar and other clean energy solutions have made in recent years and expect those trends to continue."

"There remains a great deal of untapped potential in renewable energy in Georgia and elsewhere in the U.S. We believe distributed solar projects like the Plains project will play a big role in fueling the energy needs of generations to come," SolAmerica executive vice president George Mori said in a statement.

This story originally appeared on 02.18.20

via Michael Washington / Facebook

Captain Brett Crozier received a thunderous send-off Friday morning as he exited the U.S.S. Theodore Roosevelt in Guam. Video taken by sailors on the aircraft carrier show hundreds of service members chanting "Captain Crozier! Captain Crozier!" and clapping as he walked down the gangway.

Crozier was relieved of his duty by Acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly after sending a strongly-worded letter to Navy leadership about the spread of COVID-19 on his ship.

He was ousted for sending the letter over "non-secure unclassified email" to a "broad array of people" rather than up the chain of command.


In the letter, Crozier urged Navy leadership to evacuate the vessel as the rate of infection among the sailors increased. "We are not at war, and therefore cannot allow a single Sailor to perish as a result of this pandemic unnecessarily," Crozier wrote.

via U.S. Pacific Fleet / Flickr

As of Wednesday, around 25% of the 4,800-member crew had been tested for COVID-19 and 93 were found to be infected. It's expected that 2700 service members will vacate this ship this week, with a small crew staying on board for maintenance.

The letter was leaked to the media, sparking outrage across the country. Modly says the letter also caused a panic among the sailors on the ship and their families back home.

"I have no doubt in my mind that Captain Crozier did what he thought was in the best interest of the safety and well-being of his crew," Modly said. "Unfortunately, it did the opposite. It unnecessarily raised the alarm of the families of our sailors and Marines with no plans to address those concerns."

"The responsibility for this decision rests with me," Modly added. "I expect no congratulations for it. Captain Crozier is an incredible man."

Crozier will keep his rank and remain in the Navy.

Former Vice President Joe Biden criticized the Navy's acting secretary in a statement saying that he "shot the messenger — a commanding officer who was faithful to both his national security mission and his duty to care for his sailors, and who rightly focused attention on a broader concern about how to maintain military readiness during this pandemic."

Michael Washington shared footage of Crozier's send off where someone is heard saying, "That's how you send out one of the greatest captains you ever had."

Video taken by Taliah Peterkin shows Crozier exiting the ship and giving a final salute.

Footage shared on Twitter by Danny Ocean shows Crozier taking a long walk down the gangway to a cheering crowd chanting his name.

The footage of Crozier exiting the ship is a beautiful display of sailors cheering the man who sacrificed his career to protect not only their lives, but the health of everyone they would encounter. Even though he's no longer captain of the U.S.S. Roosevelt, there's no doubt his heroism will be long remembered by his former crew and the country he proudly serves.

via CBS / Twitter

Brady Sluder, the SoundCloud rapper who proudly partied his butt off for spring break in Florida last week, seemed right out of central casting.

Ever defiant with his backwards hat and midday cheap beer buzz, he told a reporter the coronavirus wasn't going to get between him and a good time.

"Whatever happens, happens. If I get corona, I get corona," Sluder with total sincerity. "At the end of the day, I'm not going to let it stop me from partying."


After all, this party was a long time coming so he was going to fight for his right to be there when it happened.

"I've been waiting, we've been waiting for Miami spring break for a while," he added. "About two months we've had this trip planned, two, three months, and we're just out here having a good time."

Sluder unintentionally became the spokesperson for the thousands of twenty-somethings and teens that partied on the beach in south Florida while most of the country was either winding down their activities or on total lockdown.

The partiers became the source of national scorn and embarrassment for not adhering to the nationwide call to practice social distancing.

If Sluder's decision to put partying before his health only affected him, then there'd be no real reason to get too mad at the kid. But that's not how the coronavirus works. Sluder and the rest of the spring breakers were at risk of contracting the disease and then unknowingly spreading it back home.

After being shamed by most of the planet, Sluder has come out and apologized.

"Don't be arrogant and think you're invincible like myself," the spring breaker wrote on Instagram. "I wasn't aware of the severity of my actions and comments."

He spoke to the danger that can happen when young people refuse to practice social distancing.

"Like many others, I have elderly people who I adore more than anything in the world and other family members who are at risk, and I understand how concerning this disease is for us all," he said.

"Our generation may feel invincible, like I did when I commented," he added. "But we have a responsibility to listen and follow the recommendations in our communities."

Sluder's post begs an important question: Why do young people think they're invincible?

The answer is their brains aren't completely developed. This is especially true for men.

Young people's brains are still in a process of neuronal myelination, which is a fancy way of saying that the frontal lobe isn't completely connected to the rest of the brain. This process is usually complete in women by the age of 25, but men go through it until they are 30.

So guys like Sluder are able to party in a danger zone with zero worries because their brains are underdeveloped. Dumping a bunch of alcohol into the mix doesn't help things much either.

"Essentially, your frontal lobes tell you that it's a bad idea to drink alcohol and drive or to ignore the consequences of taking heroin," Gary L. Wenk Ph.D. wrote in Psychology Today.

"When your frontal lobes finally complete their process of myelination, they begin to work properly and you stop doing dangerous things," he continued. "Most importantly, you stop feeling immortal."

Photo by Henry & Co. on Unsplash

When the coronavirus finally subsides and life gets back to normal, we will all praise the heroes — medical workers, grocery store clerks, that guy who gave you a dab of hand sanitizer — and we will shame the hoarders.

The image that bests sums up this strange and terrible era will be the people with gigantic Costco carts filled with sky-high stacks of toilet paper. Their eyes filled with fear that one day they will have to resort to cleansing themselves with Kleenex or, worse, a Starbucks napkin.


The Holly Hoarders struck hardest at Costco, so now the retail giant is striking back by forcing them to live with their selfish decisions. Costco now refuses to allow its customers to return any of the hoarders' favorite purchases: toilet paper, paper towels, water, rice, Lysol, and sanitizing wipes.

Buyer's remorse is a dish best served cold. Costco is serving it in bulk.

Costco cares about its customers so it has a 100%-satisfaction guarantee and usually accepts returns on just about everything but alcohol and tobacco products. But these are unusual times.

Costco has drawn a line and refuses to grant 100% satisfaction to the folks who thought they could take all of the bum wipe for themselves.

As if America didn't love Costco enough, they're heaping extra praise on the company on Twitter.



Some folks suggested that the hoarders can atone for their greed by donating their ill-gotten loot to a local shelter or food bank.


Now that the hoarders are being punished, we need to know what inspired their heinous deeds so it never happens again.

Why in the hell did people hoard toilet paper of all things? Water, food, and hand sanitizer make sense, they can mean the difference between life or death. But toilet paper? Not so much.

Andrea Greenman, the president of the Contemporary Freudian Society, says it goes back to control and, of course, a child's anal phase.

"Controlling cleanliness around B.M.s is the earliest way the child asserts control," Greenman told The New Yorker.

"The fact that now we are all presumably losing control creates a regressive push to a very early time," she added. "So, I guess that translates in the unconscious to 'If I have a lifelong supply of toilet paper, I'll never be out of control, never be a helpless, dirty child again.' "

Costco could maximize profits while helping these hoarders with their fears of regressing into being dirty children by offering them Freudian psychoanalysis. It could set up a chaise lounge right next to the guys who sell air conditioners and solar panels.